Your editorial last week ('Born-again democracy' #330) and Sheetal Kumar's column ('Draw the line', Eyes wide shut, #330) might be alarmist, but you have a point. What's the hurry for elections when people are legitimately questioning the very composition of who is voting and for what. The least these jokers in government and the scary clowns who gave us this 'revolution' can do is, have the courtesy to listen to doubts. If they weren't too busy feathering their own nests high above the ground, maybe they would see that though we Nepalis passively paid the price for what they did, it is still our country and our right to decide how we rule it.
. It would be fatal for the parties to form a government with Maoists without convincingly solving the issue of weapons. Party cadres will bear the brunt of the Maoists' ire if arms management is not pursued as the topmost priority. What catastrophe will occur if the constitutional assembly elections are postponed by a month? Maoists rationalise the use of arms and violence as a means that justifies the ends. For them it is logical to retain arms. But who will participate in the electoral process if it is conducted under the shadow of guns? Most Nepalis don't underestimate the power of the Maoists' underhand tactics and organisational skills. In history, rogue forces have never been reliable, especially not in coalition governments.
. Why won't people just accept that elections held in June will be a farce. But then almost everything in this country has become a wretched joke. To the leaders of the land: you've already squandered most of your chances in the last six months. Mess up one more time and it will be back to Mangal Man, you fools.
On a recent visit to Nepal, I was confused about the achievement of Jana Andolan II. I didn't get why people were calling it 'loktantra' and when I asked a taxi driver to explain it to me and he called it "manpari tantra", which I understood to mean anarchy. So where is the revolution? Everyone must say that it was a revolution, or risk being branded a royalist. In response to my question about what he was, the cabbie answered that he liked the king better than loktantra but he could not say that openly. I think loktantra and the revolution must be like the emperor's new clothes. No one dares say anything. Only a child can come out and say that this was a paid-for, forced revolution. When will this child emerge from the crowd?
"I guess the airport just reflects the general state of the country." The pilot could not have said it any better than that ('Up in the air', #330). The April movement has come and gone. Maybe ten more such movements will come and go. But as long as we make choices and decisions that in some way connect to corruption, short-sightedness, and laziness, the TIA symptom will be seen in all facets of the Nepali economy.
. It is time to privatise Tribhuban International Airport and have able hands manage and expand it. Though I am glad to be returning home after ten long years, I am not looking forward to the harassment at the airport and the hassles of travelling to and from TIA.
Captain Vijay Lama's 'I am a Nepali first' (Nepali Pan, #328) was a great tribute to
nationality and patriotism. It will help us overcome the vested interests that are dividing us in the name of ethnicity and vested interest. Captain Sah'b, I agree we are Nepali and lets also learn the principle of 3D: we must perform our Duty with Discipline then Democracy will automatically prevail.
University of Texas, USA
. I was so moved by 'I am a Nepali first' that I forwarded the article to
all my friends at home and abroad, we would all like to help the Captain's
Nyanopan initiative wherever we are.
The Nepali embassy in London reflects the dire state of our public services. Visitors have worryingly bad experiences with embassy personnel. The few times I have rung the embassy, the person who answers can't mange a full sentence in English. How do these people field calls from non-Nepalis?
I think the whole mechanism-probably in all our embassies-from ambassadorial level to front staff, needs a complete overhaul. The country eventually would also benefit because these incompetent officials representing the country abroad are probably restricting tourism and other inward investment opportunities.
Please grant me the liberty to use the US word of 2006-'plutoed'-exclusively for the first time in Nepali Times, as in, "Undoubtedly, King Gyanendra's attempt to suppress the Nepali people's aspirations for peace proved a colossal failure. Instead, the popular mass movement, historic parliamentary proclamation and subsequent developments prove that he has effectively been 'plutoed' by the Nepali people circa 2006."
Sad to see that the Ass at Backside has become so wary of everything he (she?) sees ('Animal Farm in 1984). Read the situation, my friend, not the tea leaves. It's not as bad or complicated or misleading as it looks.